What is Total Quality Management ?

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The concept and application of quality control have been only started to get acknowledged in 1990s and the concept catched on up with the consumers as well. It has been defined as “the totality of features and characteristics of a product or service that bears on its ability to satisfy given needs”. Another definition of quality is meeting or exceeding customer expectations. The definition of TQ states a people focused management system that aims at continual increase in customer satisfaction at continually lower real cost. It is a total system approach and an integral part of high level strategy, it works horizontally, involves all employees, top to bottom, extending backward and forward to include supply chain and customer chain .It focuses on learning and adapting to change as necessary elements to organizational success. It comprises four basic elements – customer focus, strategic planning and leadership, continuous improvement and learning.

Customer focussince the customer knows what is quality and customer satisfaction can prove whether the product or service has quality or not. If the company can somehow find out what the customer focus is then it can deliver on aspects of quality and satisfaction at the sametime. Customer focus is also comprising of consumer relations and internal relationships.

Startegic Planning and Leadershipstrategic planning and leadership are also related aspects in quality control and total quality. Strategic planning anticipates changes, customer expectations, new business opportunities, technological developments evolving regulations, competitor actions and societal expectations and by being successful at these ends it delivers on quality .Leadership for quality is an important criterion for making the functions and implementation of planning reviewing, recognizing talent important criterion in quality improvements.

Continuous improvement and learningIt is a management philosophy that when a company achieves a certain level of success a well defined and well executed approach for improvements continuously can built system capabilities in improving production process, efficiency in productivity and overall learning in the organization.

Empowerment and teamwork The knowledge ,skills ,and motivation of the work force are all important aspects of empowering the employees of a company leading to better team work –vertical or horizontal.Interorganizational partnerships are important aspects of building organizational effectiveness and thereby enhance the quality of work design and total quality of services delivered and produced goods.

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